I’m always fascinated by where people get their inspiration, how they create something that moments earlier, didn’t exist. (I think that’s part of the reason why I love working in animation – being in the trenches of that creative process is so exciting. Literally drawing flat lines on paper and seeing those lines come to life as a moving character with a story to tell is pure magic.)

 

For me, I need mental headspace to be able to dive into the universe of my characters. Here are some of the ways I get to that happy place:

 

  • Driving with awesome music blaring in the background is a surefire way to get there.

 

  • Being quiet gets me there, too. Best best bestest place to be quiet? The library! Inhaling that awesome library smell of old books and weathered pages, being surrounded by great authors and their work, feeling the energy of people immersed in a good story…there’s really nothing like it. I owe many an inspired moment to my local public library!

 

  • Being open to finding inspiration in the least likely of places (no joke, one of my favorite scenes for FLIGHT was inspired by a scene from High School Musical 3 that I saw in the theaters with my daughters. True story.)

 

  • Being present. Woody Allen once said, “80% of success is just showing up.” Totally true. Sometimes, you’ve just gotta sit and write, even if it is crap, even if it is something that you don’t use later. But you’ve just gotta BE there.

 

Once I can get to that mental headspace, I write in total silence. I shut off the noise and just listen to the characters in my head that want to tell their story. Doing this late at night when kids and the rest of the world are fast asleep is the optimum time to do this!